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Burdette using math in school and in her faith

HAMPTON — Brittany Burdette of Locust Grove said she wants to use her love of math to teach others.

“I’ve looked into math education, and I’ve also looked into doing math with engineering,” said the 18-year-old STAR student at Bible Baptist Christian School in Hampton.

She enjoys playing softball for the school and is in the Eagle Service Society, where she assists teachers with grading papers and other duties.

Burdette said her STAR teacher, Andrew Broer, has taught her about more than just math since seventh grade.

“He always starts out in the beginning of the year having math and the Bible relate to each other,” she said. “I’ve always enjoyed his class. He explains well, and I just enjoy his teaching.”

Campbell aims to ‘make a difference’ with science

ELLENWOOD — Christopher Campbell of Ellenwood said he hopes to use his science skills to make an impact on the world around him.

“I want to make a difference on a large scale and help humanity as a whole,” said Campbell, 17.

The STAR student for Community Christian School plans to major in nuclear and radiological engineering at Georgia Tech and said he hopes to use that as a springboard to propel him into a career working with a nuclear reactor or working in research.

Campbell selected his chemistry and physics instructor, Stan Adkins, as his STAR teacher because of how Adkins has reached out to help him in his science goals.

“He hooked me up with a research program at Georgia Tech, working with him in a lab,” said Campbell.

Campbell is involved in student government, the Beta Club, the National Honor Society and the yearbook staff at Community Christian.

Van Zandvliet engineering a course to succeed

STOCKBRIDGE — Nash Van Zandvliet of Stockbridge is poised for a career in the engineering field.

Van Zandvliet, 18, is this year’s STAR student for Woodland High School. He has been accepted at Georgia Tech, and he plans to study either electrical or chemical engineering.

“I’m not entirely sure yet,” he said. “I’m trying to look around to see exactly what I want to go into.”

Van Zandvliet is involved in the National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, International Honor Society, National History Honor Society, and Mu Alpha Theta society. He is captain of Woodland High’s academic team and participates in the Beta Club, chorus, math team, peer tutoring and was on the homecoming court.

Van Zandvliet credits his STAR teacher, Michael Shook, with helping him succeed in high school.

“I’ve essentially been working with him all four years, and I’ve gotten to know him,” said Van Zandvliet. “I’ve always had a great desire to learn math in depth, and he definitely provided that by his teaching.”

Oney on track for a career in medicine

McDONOUGH — Patrick Oney of McDonough said he is planning on a career in the medical field when he finishes high school.

“I want to major in biology,” he said. “I’ve already been accepted at UGA.”

Oney, 17, is this year’s STAR student for Ola High School, where he runs track and is involved with the school’s Health Occupations Students of America club. Oney also enjoys doing clinical internships at a CorrectMed urgent care and pediatric facility in Locust Grove.

Oney’s passion for the medical field is reflected in his choice for STAR teacher, Dr. Katrina Pandya, who teaches him in AP biology.

“I’ve already been interested in biology, and I’ve just learned a lot in her class this year,” he said.

Oney said he plans to go into a career in pediatrics after college.

Allen dreams of a life in space

LOCUST GROVE — Courtney Allen, a senior at Locust Grove High School, has her eyes fixed on a career in the great beyond.

“I just really like space,” she said. “It’s one of my dreams. I want to work for NASA, because I want to be able to send my dad into space.”

The 17-year-old is this year’s STAR student at Locust Grove High, where she is involved in a variety of activities including the Beta Club, student government, softball, soccer and tennis.

She is also a cheerleader for the school’s basketball team and enjoys tutoring and drawing in her spare time.

Allen said her career track figured into her choice of physics instructor Nick Gillies as her STAR teacher.

“He’s the one who has helped me with my engineering goals and helped me discover what I really enjoy doing,” she said.

Holcomb pursuing medicine and missions

LOCUST GROVE — Savannah Holcomb of Hampton wants to combine her faith and her love for the medical field when she gets out of high school.

“I’m looking at going into medical missions — something in the medical field that also ties in with missionary work,” she said.

Holcomb is this year’s STAR student for Luella High School, and she is the captain of varsity girls soccer team and varsity cheerleading team. She is also student body president, a member of the leadership team for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and is on the math team and academic team. She is a member of honor societies for math, science, and English and the National Honor Society.

Holcomb plans to attend either Georgia Tech or Yale University after high school. She credits her STAR teacher, Lisa Boyd, with helping to shape her educational goals.

“She basically instilled in me the determination and perseverance that I know I’m going to need for the goals I have,” said Holcomb.

Ciccarello hoping for Air Force excellence

McDONOUGH — If McDonough’s Anthony Ciccarello has his way, his career aspirations will have him flying high.

Ciccarello, 18, is the STAR student for Union Grove High School and said his goals include a career in aerospace engineering.

“My first choice is to go to the Air Force Academy,” he said.

Ciccarello participated in Boy Scouts and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. He is a cadet commander and battalion commanding officer in Union Grove High’s NJROTC unit, and is a member of the schoool’s athletic, orienteering and academic teams.

Ciccarello selected his Honors English instructor, Jackie Hand, as his STAR teacher. He said although he has had a lot of good teachers over the years, Hand prepared him the most for his future endeavors.

Wilson writing a plan for success

STOCKBRIDGE — Seventeen-year-old Sydney Wilson of Stockbridge hopes her writing skills will help her succeed after high school.

“I want to be a teacher or do something with writing,” she said. “I’ve always enjoyed getting words out.”

Wilson is this year’s STAR student for Stockbridge High School, and she is a member of the Beta Club, Impact Club, National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, chorus, and is a manager for the baseball team.

Wilson said she chose her AP language and composition instructor, Joy Hebert, as her STAR Teacher because her guidance went beyond the classroom.

“She was a teacher that encouraged me in everything I wanted to do,” said Wilson. “She was very invested in me as a person rather than just as a student.”

Wilson plans to study English at Emory University.

Campbell shines at Eagle’s Landing High

McDONOUGH — Charlie Campbell is this year’s STAR student for Eagle’s Landing High School. He plans to attend Georgia Tech in the fall in pursuit of an electrical engineering degree.

Campbell is a member of the golf team and guitar club at Eagle’s Landing High. He said he is honored by his most recent accolade and credited his STAR teacher, Julie Harrison, for her past and continued efforts on his behalf.

Campbell was unavailable for further comment.

Jung on a path for pre-med success

STOCKBRIDGE — Sol Ah Jung came to the United States from South Korea three years ago and began taking classes at Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy in McDonough. Now a senior, she is the STAR student for the school and is seeking a career in the medical field.

Jung, 19, plans to major in pre-med at Emory University and is hoping scholarships will help her offset the cost of her education.

She said her STAR teacher and AP government instructor, Don Moseley, has helped her goals take shape.

“I’ve been in mock trial with him,” she said. “I talk to him a lot about my future, and I ask his advice.”

When she is not in class, Jung participates in ELCA’s international club. She is also a former president of the biology club and a former Junior Olympic skier.

Doolittle dreams of pediatrics career

McDONOUGH — Strong Rock Christian School senior Cayla Doolittle hopes to combine her affinity for children with her passion for the medical field.

“Eventually, I want to work with pediatrics and audiology,” said STAR student Doolittle, 17, of McDonough. “I’ve always had a really soft spot for kids.”

Her extracurricular activities include drama, tennis, mock trial, the National Honor Society, Beta Club, the school’s cross-country team, student government and the Student Leadership Institute.

Doolittle said she chose her English instructor, Kyle Mann, as her STAR teacher because Mann inspired her to excel beyond her writing ability.

“She really went above and beyond the call of duty to make sure we were equipped for our AP exams and all the tests we had to take,” said Doolittle.

She plans to major in biology at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, but said she isn’t stopping there.

“Eventually I want to do audiology at Vanderbilt,” said Doolittle.

Ashraf has desire for energy research

HAMPTON — Dutchtown High School senior Ammad Ashraf said he wants to learn about alternative sources of energy in college.

“I want to be a researcher,” the 17-year-old said. “I like learning new things, and energy’s really relevant to today’s society.”

This year’s STAR student at Dutchtown High expressed gratitude for the efforts of his STAR teacher, Danielle Boyum, in helping him get to this point in his life.

“In her class, she redefined my study habits, and that helped me a lot,” he said.

Ashraf plans to major in physics at Georgia Tech.

His pursuit of academic excellence is evident in his activities outside the classroom. He is a member of the National Honor Society, the Science National Honor Society and his school’s Academic Team.

Garnett getting creative with architecture

McDONOUGH — Collin Garnett said he wants to explore his creative side when he gets to college.

Garnett, 17, of McDonough is the STAR student for Henry County High School and plans to study architecture in college, because he enjoys its creative and design elements.

Garnett said two well-known schools have already expressed interest in having him join their ranks, but he hasn’t committed to either.

“I’ve been accepted to Georgia Tech and Auburn University,” he said.

Garnett participates in Henry County High’s art club, tennis team, and is also active in the Beta Club.

He said his STAR teacher, Renee Owen, has been instrumental in helping guide his future.

“For me, math hasn’t always been an interesting subject,” said Garnett. “She got me more involved in calculus and so now I want to learn more about calculus.”